Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds cover
Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds xgame front cover

Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds

Do you think old video games are boring? Play Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds, it is a 1st-person perspective game developed by ORIGIN Systems, Inc. and released on DOS in 1993. You will then know that you were wrong.

Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds description

The events of this part occur in a year after Ultima 7: The Black Gate. Lord British celebrates in his castle the victory over Guardiana and invites the Avatar and his friends to a noble feast. The morning after the celebrations under lock and key suddenly grows like a spider web, an impenetrable wall of black marble and surrounds it on all sides like a giant eggshell. Waking up, everyone who was in the castle, they find out terrible news that they are locked, black marble indestructible and output speed no. Then Lord British has summoned everyone to the meeting and become aware that this is another tricks of Guardian who used powerful magic to imprison their enemies, so that they would not be able to thwart his plans of conquest of Britannia. But there is a hope for liberation in the deepest dungeons of the castle, now filled with various monsters, there is a massive gem, which is a side-effect spells Guardian: thanks it is possible to remove the effect of evil spells. This stone is also a portal to alternative worlds controlled by Guardiano. The avatar will have to get to the stone to travel through these worlds, and, finally, to see the castle of Lord British from the evil spell of Guardiana.

This game is a technical sequel to Ultima Underworld I: the Stygan Abyss. The gameplay here is virtually the same as in the first part: advanced three-dimensional engine, which served as the basis for System Shock, a first-person view, a good physics and damage system, action-oriented combat system, rune system spells, dialogues, multiple choice questions and barter trade.

By tradition, the game begins with character generation, which will become your avatar. Here the player can choose the gender, class, skills and even appearance among several proposed options. There is a choice of skills from combat, magic, social, although the social component in these action-Packed role-playing game largely secondary. Gaining enough experience, the character will increase your level, health, mana, and get additional learning points that can be spent on skills. Unlike the first part of UUW, where they had to go to the altars and something to say, now I have to visit different teachers, each teaching the hero some skills to choose from.

Interface this part is also changed - the icons of the actions of the player has moved in the right bottom area, freeing a little more space on the left under the field of view. Graphically, the game perfectly worked in VGA mode 320x200. Stylish and colourful patterns and textures, creating the effect of being in a dark dungeon of the middle Ages. Virtually all objects and characters are represented as sprites but rocks, barrels, and chests, which represent a low polygon three-dimensional objects without textures. As in the previous section, advanced game engine gives good physics objects, it is possible to move most objects, monsters and even characters.

So much positive I want to say about inventory and containers. Last, there are several types: backpacks, boxes, bags, - each of which can hold an unlimited number of objects, but at a certain limit to their total weight. Each item has its own weight, and the player can place them in the inventory within its forces, so the extra items you have to store or just throw on the ground.
The player has 8 basic inventory slots where you can place objects or containers 2 cells of owner, where you can put a weapon and shield to activate them, and cell 2 on the shoulders, which is usually placed lighted torches, lamps, or a quiver for arrows and sling stones. For parts of armor the player has as many as 5 slots located in the image of the hero on the right: head, body, hands, knees and feet.

Almost all objects have a margin of safety: for example, if you hit several times to the wall of glass bottles, scrolls or magic wand, they will break in spray of teeth (although it also creates and interesting bug - in the form of fragments you can use them unlimited times). Your margin of safety have armor and weapons, but they gradually become corrupted during the battle, only in the case that triggered the damage status of the subject.

Convenient is game map of the area - it is presented as a separate item that is only in the beginning of the game in a single copy. As you study the terrain map is filled with detail, and you can see where we are and which way you look, what floor are we on, and even switch between maps. A particularly useful element is the ability to make your text notes on the map when, for example, it should be noted key points or put your own labels.

The spell system here works similarly to the previous part of the Underworld. For starters, the player will have to find a special bag for runes (it lies directly behind a secret door in the private room of the hero), and then throughout the game is carefully to collect all the necessary runes. Gathering the runes for the spell, they can combine in the bag to get the appropriate spell and apply it. If the level of magical skill, the range of the spells and mana of your character will allow, he will be able to successfully cast the spell. The level of access to circles of spells increases as the hero opens access to new worlds. Accordingly, opening the last of the 8th world, the tolerance level becomes the maximum, and you can cast spells of all circles from the first to the 8th.

Music is beyond praise: dispatched very much the atmosphere of the dark Ages, desperate wandering in dungeons, epic marches and crystal magic melodies. The game has 16 tracks in the midi format, each of which is replaced depending on the situation: for example, when a character pulls out a weapon, or encounters a monster and begins to conquer him, it will play the corresponding melody. This technique is the change of melody on the situation in the future also more tightly implemented in System Shock, and in the future began to actively use it in their games and other developers. Historically it is believed that this technology first appeared in Ultima Underworld. The game soundtrack was also significantly enriched with the effects that quietly and smoothly blend with the atmosphere of the game.

Substantially richer and more varied become the mysteries and plot twists. Because we have travel around the colorful worlds and unusual places, their design is also different from the traditional underground atmosphere of the middle Ages. For example, the world Talorus filled with alien technology, mechanical puzzles; in fact, it's an organic space ship from Star Trek. Colourful Ice world in which the Yeti run and throw snowballs, but because the terrain there is mostly ice, the movement is considerably complicated by the fact that one has to slide on the snow-covered Islands. But it may seem alien to the Ethereal Void - black crazy dimension, it is possible to walk through the colorful tracks and meet a lot of reflection of reality.

Considerably more attention is given to the characters. In the beginning there is a whole floor, full of key characters, and in the case that the player will infuriate someone will steal their belongings right under their noses and begin to fight them, you will certainly suffer defeat, because they are all immortal, and the hero wakes up in a prison cell, where he will have to apologize personally for Lord British. It is logical that after many such tricks to ask for forgiveness will already be useless and the hero will forever remain in prison.

As for the set of monsters in the dungeon - then he is very rich, though at first we encounter only weak enemies: rats, slugs, and snakes. In open areas, you may encounter bats in the muddy waters - dangerous waters. Moving deeper into the dungeons, we'll face much more dangerous enemies: headless, damage which conventional weapons would be quite difficult - usually damage the weapon itself; beholders that shoot deadly magical bolts. In each dimension will have its own unique set of monsters: sometimes we have to fight against thinking and humanoid creatures - goblins, or people, in case fail to agree.

This game can be described as the second illegitimate son of the legendary Ultima. It also includes the historical events of the Ultima series, but with a somewhat unconventional his approach, the events are transferred in a closed space, the dark dungeons, the protagonist is always the same, without a party of his loyal companions, used a powerful three-dimensional engine from the first person.
Both parts of Ultima Underworld was perceived very ambiguously by fans of the series: who at once condemned them because of the many small inconsistencies, although many players have appreciated it for the atmosphere, graphics and rich features. Created a game Studio Looking Glass Technologies, spawned the equally legendary games System Shock 1-2 Thief 1-2 and...

This game can be recommended to fans of the Ultima series, but first and foremost - fans-line role-playing games, wandering through dark dungeons and of course, the agoraphobics, because the game is not unnecessarily open spaces.

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Source: Archive.org, Mobygames.com

Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds

Action, Role-Playing (RPG)
ORIGIN Systems, Inc.
Looking Glass Technologies, Inc.